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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We Have Always Lived In The Castle, 22 Jan. 2011
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This review is from: We Have Always Lived in the Castle (Penguin Modern Classics) (Kindle Edition)
This is, without doubt, one of my favourite books of all time. From the brilliant opening line, you are totally wrapped in Merricat's bizarre and original world. As a narrator, she is sublime - leading you on into her mind and thoughts - introducing you to the remains of her family that have not been poisoned at the lunch her Uncle spends his time writing about. From the start the world is skewed - to her Uncle, Merricat is not there at all, and both he and Merricat turn to her sister, Constance, for nourishment and care. Constance was accused of the murder of her family, but found innocent, and the town treat Merricat and Constance as oddities to be treated with aggression and fear. Merricat and Constance retreat into their home, reclusive until the sudden appearance of a cousin who brings about sudden changes and who threatens Merricat's world. Their retreat mirrors Shirly Jackson herself - a depressive, obese alchoholic who feared going outside and who fought with her own neighbours, giving glorious expression to her fears and obsessions through her characters. Reading about Shirley Jackson, it seems the residents of her small town were not very happy when they read this book and I can understand why, but to produce such a wonderful work from private anguish is surely the work of a genius. It is wonderful to see this book not only re-released, but also released on kindle, along with some other works by the author. Could we have them all re-released with such care please? The author, and her readers, deserve it and, if you have not yet read this book, then I am extremely jealous.
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4.4 out of 5 stars (57 customer reviews)
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S Riaz "S Riaz"
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Location: England

Top Reviewer Ranking: 10